State law requires districts to use alternatives to out-of-school suspension or expulsion, such as in-school suspension, behavioral interventions, or restorative practices.
Illinois Compiled Statutes 105-5-10-22.6 Suspension of expulsion of pupils; school searches.
(e) To maintain order and security in the schools, school authorities may inspect and search places and areas such as lockers, desks, parking lots, and other school property and equipment owned or controlled by the school, as well as personal effects left in those places and areas by students, without notice to or the consent of the student, and without a search warrant. As a matter of public policy, the General Assembly finds that students have no reasonable expectation of privacy in these places and areas or in their personal effects left in these places and areas. School authorities may request the assistance of law enforcement officials for the purpose of conducting inspections and searches of lockers, desks, parking lots, and other school property and equipment owned or controlled by the school for illegal drugs, weapons, or other illegal or dangerous substances or materials, including searches conducted through the use of specially trained dogs. If a search conducted in accordance with this Section produces evidence that the student has violated or is violating either the law, local ordinance, or the school's policies or rules, such evidence may be seized by school authorities, and disciplinary action may be taken. School authorities may also turn over such evidence to law enforcement authorities.
Illinois Compiled Statutes 105-5-2-3.176 Safe Schools and Healthy Learning Environments Grant Program.
(a) The State Board of Education, subject to appropriation, is authorized to award competitive grants on an annual basis under a Safe Schools and Healthy Learning Environments Grant Program. The goal of this grant program is to promote school safety and healthy learning environments by providing schools with additional resources to implement restorative interventions and resolution strategies as alternatives to exclusionary discipline, and to address the full range of students’ intellectual, social, emotional, physical, psychological, and moral developmental needs. (b) To receive a grant under this program, a school district must submit with its grant application a plan for implementing evidence-based and promising practices that are aligned with the goal of this program. The application may include proposals to (i) hire additional school support personnel, including, but not limited to, restorative justice practitioners, school psychologists, school social workers, and other mental and behavioral health specialists; (ii) use existing school-based resources, community-based resources, or other experts and practitioners to expand alternatives to exclusionary discipline, mental and behavioral health supports, wraparound services, or drug and alcohol treatment; and (iii) provide training for school staff on trauma-informed approaches to meeting students’ developmental needs, addressing the effects of toxic stress, restorative justice approaches, conflict resolution techniques, and the effective utilization of school support personnel and community-based services. For purposes of this subsection, “promising practices” means practices that present, based on preliminary information, potential for becoming evidence-based practices.... (c) The State Board of Education, subject to appropriation for the grant program, shall annually disseminate a request for applications to this program, and funds shall be distributed annually. The criteria to be considered by the State Board of Education in awarding the funds shall be (i) the average ratio of school support personnel to students in the target schools over the preceding 3 school years, with priority given to applications with a demonstrated shortage of school support personnel to meet student needs; and (ii) the degree to which the proposal articulates a comprehensive approach for reducing exclusionary discipline while building safe and healthy learning environments. Priority shall be given to school districts that meet the metrics under subsection (b) of Section 2-3.162 [105 ILCS 5/2-3.162]. (d) The State Board of Education, subject to appropriation for the grant program, shall produce an annual report on the program in cooperation with the school districts participating in the program. The report shall include available quantitative information on the progress being made in reducing exclusionary discipline and the effects of the program on school safety and school climate. This report shall be posted on the State Board of Education’s website by October 31 of each year, beginning in 2020. ...
Illinois Compiled Statutes 105-5-27-23.7. Bullying prevention.
“Restorative measures” means a continuum of school-based alternatives to exclusionary discipline, such as suspensions and expulsions, that: (i) are adapted to the particular needs of the school and community, (ii) contribute to maintaining school safety, (iii) protect the integrity of a positive and productive learning climate, (iv) teach students the personal and interpersonal skills they will need to be successful in school and society, (v) serve to build and restore relationships among students, families, schools, and communities, and (vi) reduce the likelihood of future disruption by balancing accountability with an understanding of students’ behavioral health needs in order to keep students in school.
Public Act 99-0456 School District Self-Assessment Checklist
Policy requires districts to use non-exclusionary methods of discipline such as restorative justice approaches, clasroom-based interventions, and/or referrals to appropriate service providers.
The Transforming School Discipline Collaborative Model Student Code of Conduct
Document encourages use of restorative justice, restorative practices, or other non-punitive discipline approaches as alternatives to exclusion or school removal.